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Manchuria Crisis

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Firstly, Japan decided to invade Manchuria because Japan had been growing rapidly and needed to expand to gain resources and space. Manchuria was very rich with raw materials and Manchuria had good farming land and this is why Japan decided to invade Manchuria. The invasion would allow Japan to cope with the growth.

Furthermore, In September 1931, The Mukden Incident took place. The Japanese blamed the Chinese for planting a bomb at the Manchurian railway and killing Japanese passengers. This gave the Japanese a valid reason to invade China and they invaded and conquered Manchuria by February 1932.

Finally, the Manchuria crisis showed to the world how weak the League was. The crisis highlighted the weaknesses such as the slowness as the League took so long to make a decision. Also it showed how useless the leagues sanctions were displaying the League had no ways to stop anyone. Additionally, it showed the smaller nations that they could not rely on the league for help.

Briefly explain the key features of the Pact of Steel

Firstly, the pact of Steel was between three countries: Italy, Japan and Germany. The pact was made to strengthen the relationship between Italy, Japan and Germany. It meant that if one country went to war the others had to support them and aid them and this was vital for the upcoming war.

Moreover, the pact of steel united two strong fascist leaders and the strongest power in Asia together and all of them were against communism. The Pact of Steel completely opposed Italy’s Stresa Front and it meant that that the League had lost a key member and were relatively weaker. This meant when the war would start the League would be weaker.

Finally, the Pact of Steel showed to the world how weak Italy were and how little their military capacity was. They were being dragged along by their stronger ally, Germany. Italy chose *non-belligerency because they said they were not ready to participate in war till 1942 because their army was not good and skilled. This showed how weak Italy was to everyone and showed them as less of a threat.

*Not participating in war

Briefly explain the key features of German Reoccupation of Rhineland

Firstly, Hitler decided to invade Rhineland because he wanted to show everyone that he was going against the Treaty of Versailles and the Treaty of Locarno. Breaking the treaties was part of Hitler’s foreign policy. Also, Rhineland was a strategic point as it separated Germany and France so if Hitler had Rhineland he would have an easy route into France.

Additionally, the reoccupation of Rhineland was a risk that Hitler took. He was not sure how the League would respond to him breaking the Treaty of Versailles. However, the risk paid off for Hitler as he managed to retake Rhineland without any resistance. This allowed Hitler to gain a lot of confidence and it meant he was more daring.

Finally, the reoccupation of Rhineland showed the world how weak and self-interested the League was. They were weak because they did not react and France said it would not do anything without Britain. They were shown to be selfish because the League was too busy with the Abyssinian Crisis and see what they could gain from that rather than worry about their own Treaty being broken.

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